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What is De quervain's tenosynovitis?

De quervain's tenosynovitis is inflammation of the tendons on the thumb side of your wrist causing pain when turning the wrist, grasping or making a fist.

What causes De quervain's tenosynovitis?

The exact cause of de quervain's tenosynovitis is not known, however, any activity that relies on repetitive hand or wrist movement such as working in the garden, playing music, knitting, cooking, and lifting objects can aggravate the condition.

What are symptoms/effects of De Quervain's tenosynovitis?

The symptoms of De Quervain's tenosynovitis include pain and tenderness at the side of the wrist beneath the base of the thumb. There may also be swelling and redness in the area.

Physiotherapist assisted lateral deviation of the wrist stretches Above: Physiotherapist assisted lateral deviation of the wrist stretches

Diagnosis of De Quervains tenosynovitis

De Quervain's tenosynovitis is diagnosed based on the typical appearance, location of pain, and tenderness of the affected wrist by either a physiotherapist or a doctor.

Physiotherapy for De Quervains tenosynovitis

Physiotherapy at Manchester Physio will identify the cause of irritation of the thumb tendons and provide an individualised program which will promote correct wrist and thumb positions, range of movement and strength of the wrist and hand and prevent future problems.

Physiotherapy treatment at Manchester Physio may include:
  • Advice on how to modify activity during recovery
  • Advice on forearm or thumb splints
  • Ergonomic assessment of your workstation and the way you do work tasks
  • Exercise program for the wrist and hand to regain pain free range of movement and help you regain independence with functional tasks.
  • Ultrasound to promote healing
  • Ice and heat therapy to relieve pain
As you progress, your physiotherapist will give you exercises to help strengthen and stabilise the muscles and joints in your hand and thumb. You will also be provided with exercises to improve fine motor control and dexterity. These exercises are designed to get your hand working in ways that are similar to your work tasks and sport activities.

Your physiotherapist at Manchester Physio will ensure that you can get back to your everyday activities pain free and to the best of your ability and teach you a number of ways to avoid future problems.

For more information about physiotherapy for De quervain's tenosynovitis, or to book an appointment please call 0161 883 0077.

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